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Business building for a better biosphere 

Velocity-linked founders make and sell products supporting sustainability

Founders and students are developing and selling products that are helping improve the health of our planet. Ranging from improving sustainable energy source efficiencies to reducing plastic waste and petroleum-based, synthetic textiles, the impact these startups can have could be felt globally — and are being developed in downtown Kitchener and the University of Waterloo campus.

Photo by NASA of the earth seen from outer space.

Are we entering an age of solar panels?

With President Biden announcing $7 billion in federal grants for residential solar projects, it’s clear how important solar energy is to protect our planet. Swish, co-founded by Miswar Sayed and Amirhossein Boreiri, plans to make cleaning those panels easier than it is currently. The startup is making transparent screens that retrofit on an existing solar panel and can remove the dust using nanotechnology meaning that panels can be cleaned multiple times a day with just a flip of a switch. This cleaning method will replace robots that are commonly used and reduces reliance on water. The U.S. government funding is expected to serve 900,000-plus households in low- and middle-income communities.

From food waste to fashion

Alt Tex is making polyester-like material out of food waste. That’s two-fold sustainability: reducing the production of polyester, a petroleum-based material, and putting food waste, one of the largest land fill contributors, to good use. Founders Myra Arshad and Avneet Ghotra are paving the way for fabric alternatives.

Fundraising $2 million to help us beat the heat without warming the planet

Evercloak’s nanomaterials will reduce the very energy-intensive process of traditional air-conditioning, which pumps greenhouse gases into the environment. Evercloak, co-founded by Evelyn Allen and Dr. Michael Pope, is scaling up production of its membranes to enable energy efficient building cooling. Their membranes’ unique properties allows water vapour to be removed from the air without having to condense it — unlike today’s refrigerant-based technology — making cooling more efficient and climate-friendly.

No plastic, no problem: how nanotechnology can eliminate plastic packaging

Nfinite Nanotech is making coatings that can make biodegradable packaging stronger and increase how much current products can be recycled. Co-founders Chee Hau Teoh and Jhi Yong Loke, both University of Waterloo engineering graduates, have built partnerships with major brands including PepsiCo and Mitsubishi and have almost tripled the staff of their new Waterloo location.

Upping electric vehicle charge reliability to facilitate EV adoption

FractalEV, co-founded by Micah Gold-Utting, Chris Mendes and Spenser Emery, aims to boost the adoption of electric vehicles by making reliable EV charging available everywhere drivers want to charge, including for large fleets and multi-residential households.

Improving how we harness the power of the wind

Co-founded by engineering PhD candidate Rafat Jami, Innowind Energy Solutions is increasing the reliability and performance of wind turbines using novel blade attachment systems.

Velocity mural at incubator in downtown Kitchener

This is just a glimpse of the founders working with Velocity who are developing cleantech. On Earth Day we celebrate those whose vision and drive collided to make a positive impact on our planet. 

See more Velocity companies